City of Beaufort agrees to participate in affordable housing trust fund

The city of Beaufort has approved supporting a regionwide Affordable Housing Trust Fund to create additional jobs and affordable housing units.
Published: Sep. 20, 2022 at 6:39 AM EDT
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BEAUFORT, S.C. (WCSC) - The city of Beaufort has approved supporting a regionwide Affordable Housing Trust Fund.

This comes after two years of meeting to discuss opinions on the lack of affordable housing for low-income families.

The main goal of the trust fund is to create additional workforce jobs and affordable housing units.

Beaufort is contributing just shy of $200,000 this year.

Joining the city in the intergovernmental agreement are Beaufort and Jasper Counties and Hilton Head Island, Port Royal, Bluffton, Hardeeville and Yemassee.

They are in the process of forming a governing board between the regions to bring everyone together for conversations.

Once formed, the governing board will consist of nine members with a representative from each area and an at-large member approved by all jurisdictions. Officials say no elected officials will serve on the board.

The next step of the fund is to get affordable housing out of the ground as quickly as possible.

Mayor Stephen Murray says it is no secret that a lack of attainable housing is a problem in the city of Beaufort and it has been in their strategic plan for several years.

“So the more we can work together, leverage our individual resources, share ideas about how we’re each tackling these things, I think the better off the better off we’re going to be so considering it just made sense to cooperate and regional way, and to create this sort of larger pot of resources that folks will be able to draw from,” Murray said.

The total pledged amount from the various cities throughout the region is $7.2 million over the next ten years.